. OnHiatus.com > Journal 1 > Day Index > Journal Entry: April 25, 2000

Tuesday, April 25, 2000
William Creek to Marla, SA, Australia
Australia's FlagSouth Australia's Flag

Marla, SA, Australia:
Latitude: 27° 18' 14" South
Longitude: 133° 37' 21" East
Altitude: 1130 feet
From Seattle: 9206 miles
Lodging: Hotel - Travellers Rest

Today's Travel:
Country: Australia
Region: South Australia
Route: Car: Oonadatta Track, Coober Pedy Track, Stuart Highway (A87)
Start: William Creek
Stop 1. Coober Pedy
End:Marla, SA, Australia
Road Miles:282 miles
Linear:245 miles
Weather: Mostly Sunny / Partial Sun

Click on map to Zoom in...
Trip Stats to Date:
Day: 1111
Miles Driven:180031
Linear Dist: 214002
Countries Visited: 68
Regions Visited: 257
More stats...
Hotels: 363
Friends / Family: 293
Camping: 123
Hostels: 248
Transit: 70
Other Lodging: 13
Beers: 3920

Journal Entry:
Just after leaving William Creek the Oonadatta Track was still closed. No problem since we wanted to head to Coober Pedy anyway. The track was mostly pretty good, though there were a few muddy spots, and many detours around new lakes. For the most part the land is absolutely flat, and, except for the temporary carpet of bright green growth, is featurless.

Coming into Coober Pedy the flatness is interupted by artificial mini-mountain ranges. Welcome to the world opal mining capital. Most of the opal fields we past have offices that are buit into low hills - a good intro to the town proper. A large percentage of the town's houses / stores / restaurants / hotels / etc. are buit underground! It's actually a pretty small town and there's not much here besides inumerable souvenir stores selling opal studded monstrosities. Drove around, filled up the gas tank, picked up some groceries for lunch, and quickly checked my email (yep, there was an internet cafe). All in all it's not an appealing place and I was happy to be on my way.

One bitter-sweet thing that Coober Pedy marked was the return to the paved road. It was very nice to be able to travel relatively quietly and to be able to relax a bit. However, the adventure seems to be over, and the dirt track just fit so much better in the scenery. The 160 kilometers to Marla passed quickly and in just a couple hours we were checking into the travellers facility - pretty much all there is to Marla. After the last two nights of camping, decided to splurge and got a proper room - hot water shower and everything! Did a load of laundry, drank a bottle of wine from my "cellar", and had a very average dinner.

Related Sites:
US State Department Consular Information Sheets: Australia
CIA World Fact Book: Australia

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